THE DIVIDED STATES OF AMERICA: IN GOD WE ONCE TRUSTED!

By J. Stewart Cook

I would truly like to start this article with the words…”My fellow Americans,” but I can’t since I am Canadian. Nevertheless, I will write this article as your adopted son, since I honestly care for you.

I think it is time to delve into the “MESS” we, as a society, have created. I believe that all Americans saw this coming throughout the past decades as we slowly fell into the “Abyss of Indifference,” as I will call it! Perhaps the word “HELL” would be more appropriate, but then Hell is a place that one reaches based on “Judgement” and this is not the case with being “Indifferent.”

Indifferent…”having no particular interest or sympathy; unconcerned.”

As society evolved over the past four or five decades, there has been a trend showing citizens lacking interest, sympathy etc., untoward their fellow man and woman. Though, not only untoward their fellow citizens, but society as a whole.

Throughout these decades, countless studies have been undertaken and, subsequently, written about society by the experts in the fields of social science, political science, etc. Without getting into a lengthy analysis of some of these studies, it’s sufficient to say that they examined trends occurring in society over the many years. One of the most outstanding trends was the movement away from a “faith based” society to a “secular” society. As an example, if you take the entertainment industry, in the fifties and sixties (and perhaps even the seventies) you could watch a “sitcom” and find the members of the cast, particularly if it was a “family” setting with a dinner scene, saying grace; or a scene where the children were going to bed and saying a prayer before sleeping.

If one examines all facets of society, be it a working environment or a leisure environment, one’s faith always played a role in the daily activities of citizens. As time went by, citizens soon realized that conflict was arising due to, not only the many different faiths (although most faiths in America were base on Judeo-Christina principles) but how faith seemed to restrict the way we wanted to mold society.

Then, appearing on the scene, was a new movement. I would rather refer to it as a “system of political or social philosophy that rejects all forms of religious faith and worship or the principle of separation of the state from religious institutions.” It was “Secularism!”

As society became more educated and sophisticated, faith no longer was a measure of the well being of a society. It was not like “science.” So why not simply separate it from “state.” And so “Secularists” saw that it was good…the next day!

With any philosophy, there is always room for interpretation. As society moved through the last five decades, all forms of interpretation arose as to how citizens were to conduct their lives. This was contrary to a “faith-based” society where “all sang from the same song sheet.”  Issues of controversy arose. Be it homosexuality, abortion, the environment, equality for all citizens, racial matters, immigration, etc., all were to be seen from a new perspective…a “secular” perspective.

Nevertheless, it must be stated, that faith does bring an element of…well, “Am I my brother’s keeper.” Do I truly need to care for the well being of my fellowman/woman in society? Faith and guilt sometimes go hand-in-hand. Do I need to care for others within society and, if not, will I feel guilty? I believe that “guilt” has been overtaken by “indifference.” Frankly, I do not need to show interest or sympathy, I’m simply “unconcerned.”

Institutions, such as government, must show interest in the conduct and well being of their citizens. Keep in mind, officers administering the government are paid to do so. Nevertheless, governments try to institute in their workforce a level of morality and ethical conduct. It also tries to ensure that all citizens are treated equally in a secular society.

I point out at this time, that actions based on faith should not be seen as having been obliterated. There continues to be the philosophy of “Mother Theresa” but more on a personal note.

Looking back over the decades we also saw a philosophy of “Me, Myself and I.” Before anything else, I come first. People became more educated, wealthier, mobile, and, hence, independent. The “nuclear family” was changing. It was getting smaller and procreation was occurring at a later date. The woman’s movement radically changed society. Talking about “independence,” women embraced it and never looked back!

“Singing from the same song sheet,” not anymore. Singing solo was now the way of society. Secularism, however, brought “good and evil” to society. Then again, that is open to interpretation. Pornography, abortion, etc., may be viewed as “evil” by many in society. On the other hand, secularism would state…”it is in the eye of the beholder” and not only beauty.

Secularism leads to openness and to a certain extent “control.” Openness to information, and at the same time, protecting the privacy of society’s citizens. It is known that access to information may also lead to control of citizens.

As society evolved, and with the advent of the computer, much changed with regard to the management of society. We witnessed greater control of society’s citizens with those who had access to computers and, concurrently, information. People were getting concerned that control was falling into the hands of a few. Information was being used by such people for purpose other than its original intended use. Issues were now being raised regarding the manner in which we treated people, what we said about people, how people conducted themselves. So, was “there something rotten in Denmark.?” Oh, my goodness, did I say that? I’m hitting the realm of…Political Correctness!”

Yes, the world of “Political Correctness.” So here we are today, confronting the world of “political correctness.” So let us turn to Wikipedia, one of the biggest infants of the internet, to find the definition of “political correctness.” A “term used to describe language, policies, or measures that are intended to avoid offense or disadvantage to members of particular groups in society. Since the late 1980s, the term has come to refer to avoiding language or behavior that can be seen as  excluding, marginalizing, or insulting groups of people considered disadvantaged or discriminated against, especially groups defined by sex or race. In public discourse and the media, it is generally used as a pejorative, implying that these policies are excessive.”

Like many things in the world, when the use of words or terms is to the point of “ad nauseam” it looses it purpose or effectiveness. People still “grudgingly” accept the term “political correctness,” however, it may no longer have the effect it once had!

Of course, the word “political” only reminds me of a component of society known as “politics.” In the grand ol’ USA, we witnessed (like many democracies) changes in the manner politics has been conducted over the past decades. It is without saying, that the world of politics was once an “open”

institution where people truly thought they had, not only a say, but true impact, on how government and society should be managed by elected officials. As time went by, citizens became more leery in the manner elected officials were representing them at the constituency level. They now felt citizens were “secondary.” Too much power was being placed in the hands of elected officials, citizens were being neglected, and “control” was the order of the day.

Yes, it was bound to happen. The stars were all aligned, awaiting the “political messiah” to appear before the citizens of America. Someone, who would be prepared to create a “New World Order,” placing power and control back in the hands of the electorate. It was a time for a “political cleansing!” It was time to open “Pandora’s Political Box.” And, indeed, it opened!

In 2016, a federal election was held. Two parties, the Republican Party, also commonly called the GOP (for “Grand Old Party”) and the Democratic Party vied to be the elected party to lead America. Almost, out of the blue, came a businessman, with virtually no political experience, who ran for the leadership of the Republican Party. In time, he challenged and beat many seasoned candidates and was elected leader of the Party. He, subsequently, ran for the highest position in the country and became President of the United States of America. It was outstanding! His opponent, the leader of the Democratic Party, a woman, who was confident that the Presidency was hers to win. It wasn’t meant to be!

The new President, a populist with the people, had an agenda to “open” up the American political doors, which had been closed for so long, cleanse the “political house” and Make America Great Again. He commenced the process upon being elected. He was not “politically correct,” his tone and words were not necessarily “easy on the ears.” But he did have a unique trait of arousing his audience to see his vision. Many Americans liked his vision and supported him all the way to the White House.

It is without doubt that the President has created division amongst the American people. The people have broken a long term tradition of supporting their President, no matter what his/her political affiliation may be. He has rattled, and somewhat cleansed, the control politicians have had on Capital Hill and Washington. He is battling internal conflict within his Party and trying to put to rest possible influence foreign states may have had on the 2016 election and his present administration.

He has fought personal attacks, with a broken halo over his head. He is viewed by some as racially discriminatory, a “divider” of people and one filled with falsehoods. On the other hand, his supporters truly believe that he is a “Godsend” who will eventually “Make America Great Again!”

Change must happen in America. A true cleansing is needed. A divided people must come together as one, no matter who is ruling. Peace must reign amongst the electorate. Respect and concern for one’s fellow citizen need to return as it was in the past.

Should all fail, America will remain in the “Abyss of Indifference” for a long time. Let all “differences” be put aside and let us all turn to the One who has NEVER failed America…IN GOD WE TRUST.